Elevation: 6,040 ft
GPS: 39.933, -105.282 Google Map · Climbing Area Map
Page Views: 7,248 total · 35/month
Shared By: david goldstein on May 3, 2003
Admins: Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monty, Monomaniac, Tyler KC
Access Issue: COVID-19 Notice & Seasonal Closures Details

Description

Shunned and feared, the Rotwand is a sizeable, accessible Eldo cliff that gets virtually no traffic, probably for good reason. It is the eastern most cliff in Eldo, directly across the river from the main parking lot. It is ostensibly named after various Rotwands (Red Wall) in Europe, but the name is really a phonetic word play and testament to the quality of the rock. To get an idea of what you'll be dealing with, visualize the loathsome rotten bands of Rincon and the West Ridge and then imagine a 200' high cliff comprised of nothing but. Considering how nerve-wracking and downright dangerous the climbing there tends to be, the cliff sports an astonishing number of routes. Rossister considers virtually all of these routes VS.

Rotwand advisories: In my (limited -- two Rot routes) experience, 50% of holds are suspect -- handholds regularly break off. There can be lots of gear, but more than half the good placements are in shattered rock and you really don't want to test them. Route finding is tricky, kind of like Hallet Peak but with terrible rock and of course, there will be no no chalk to mark the way. As you might expect, there is plently of loose rock; in 2003, we threw and knocked several non-negligible chunks off of "the most popular route on the Rockwand" which had been established by Kor in the 60's. Bottom line prereq: have your shit together.

Reasons to climb at the Rotwand: 1. No waiting in line; in 20 years of Eldo climbing, I don't recall seeing anyone else on it. 2. Climbing there is a very intense, focusing experience.

(Calling Steve Levin.) Open invitation to any old hands to weigh in with any Rotwand lore?

Ever wonder what was the purpose of that little gazebo above the lower Rotward? Examine page 78 of Godfrey's & Chelton's Climb! where Ivy Baldwin's low wire was attached. That may represent the highest usage day for the Rotwand ever!

Getting There

Approach: Hang a right at the bridge, passing the south face of Wind Ridge and continuing to a slabby gully that abuts the west face of the Rotwand. Scramble up the gully until the start of your route. There is a section of easy 5th class near the lower end of the gully.

Descent: Scramble down the east side.

6 Total Climbs

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Classic Climbing Routes at The Rotwand

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b X
 12
Rotwand Route
Trad 3 pitches
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c X
 3
Kinnder Rooten
Trad 2 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
Rotwand Route
 12
5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b X Trad 3 pitches
Kinnder Rooten
 3
5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c X Trad 2 pitches
More Classic Climbs in The Rotwand »

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